2 THE VERBAL PHRASEVerbal phrases encode our experience of events (activities, processes, states)The VP can be simple and of one verb (stand, catch, waiting, went, caught, etc) or complex and so consist of 2 to 5 wordsEven when extended/complex with 2 or more items, the VP is replaceable by a single main verbVP can have ff structures:aux(s) + a negator + a lexical verb
3 The HeadThe head is the most important item and so is obligatory in the VP structureA lexical verb (stay, came, sleeps, wonder, etc.) or an auxiliary main verb (is, was, has, been, do, etc) feature as the headExamples of VP heads:The stayed overnightThey have paid their duesHe is intelligentWe have your detailsThey do everythingHe is sleeping
4 Auxiliaries Up to a maximum of 4 aux verb can preface a main verb: He must eat/ they have slept/He must have eaten/ she has been waitingThey must have been beatenHe must have been being beatenAux are of the 2 types:The primary auxiliaries – be, have, do (carry gram meaning – tense, aspect, person, number); andThe modal auxs – will, would, shall, may, etc. (encode modal meanings – possibility, probability, necessity, obligation)Only Primary auxs can function as main verbsThe first auxiliary verb in the VP is called the operatorIdentify the operator in the VP above
5 The Operator Can be any aux vb (primary/modal) Possesses 4 properties: They take negative particles in contracted expressions: we shouldn’t have comeThey undergo inversion in interrogative structures: shouldn’t we have come?They are coded (substituted with main verb): I will be coming if Fred will, we shouldn’t have come, should weThey receive emphasis: You should have comethese 4 properties constitute the acronym NICEHOW DO WE COME BY THIS ACRONYMY?
6 PREPOSITIONAL PHRASE PPs may have the structure: Modifier + prep + complementRight through my houseQuite in front of the shopJust at that meetingTHE HEAD: (ref to 534 – 535 for more examples)Always a preposition which may be simple - 1 word (in, before, under, against, about, beside, etc.)Or a multiword:2 words: but for, as for3 words: (in addition to, in contrast to, by way of, apart from, by way ofOr verbal derivatives (considering, given, including,Unlike in other phrase types, the head of the PP cant stand alone, nor can the entire structure be replaced by a single preposition.Both prep and complement are obligatory
7 Prepositional complements The main complements are NPs (Ns, Pron)From me, for them, in my father’s house, by the fireside, through his infant soul, throughout his entire years, in accordance with the constitution, as a result of the disruption, on behalf of the organisationOther items may sometimes complement the prepositional head:AdjPs, AdvPs, PPs, Fin (pg 536
8 Modifiers in the PP Not all preps accept modifiers Generally, ff elements can function as modifiers in the PP:Grading modifiers:Intensifying modifiers:Directional modifiers:Attenuating modifiers:Quantifying modifiers:Descriptive or attitudinal modifiers:Focusing/reinforcing modifiers:English Grammar; a Univ Course – Downing et al. Pg
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